Ho, MD, an eminent virologist and infectious disease specialist, died Monday at the age of 86 at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital after a brief illness. Dr. Ho was chairman emeritus of the Department of Infectious Diseases and Microbiology at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health and former Chief of the Division of Infectious Disease at the Pittsburgh School of Medicine. The son of the renowned Chinese diplomat rescuer Feng Shan Ho, Dr. Ho was born in Yiyang, Hunan Province, China. His childhood and adolescence were spent in Turkey, Austria and the United States, where his father was posted. After returning to China, he attended Tsinghua University before transferring to Harvard College, graduating summa cum laude with a BA in philosophy and government in 1949. He was also elected to the Phi Beta Kappa Honors Society. In 1954, he graduated from Harvard Medical School and specialized in infectious disease under Nobel Laureate John F. Enders. After moving to the University of Pittsburgh in 1959, he became a full professor at the age of 35, where he eventually became head of the Department of Microbiology of the Graduate School of Public Health. He also became chief of Infectious Diseases at the Medical School of the University of Pittsburgh. His life's interest was centered on interferons, of which he published a main article in the New England Journal of Medicine. Focused on solving the world's most virulent and pandemic viruses, Dr. Ho established the University of Pittsburgh AIDS Men's Study and contributed to the International AIDS conference on a regular basis. He worked in conjunction with Thomas Starzl, known as "the father of modern transplantation" to solve problems of transplant infections. He was the author of many papers and books, including the best known, "Cytomegalovirus: Biology and Infection". In 1979, he was elected to the Chinese academy of sciences in Taiwan, the Academia Sinica. Following his retirement from the University of Pittsburgh in 1992, he became a Distinguished Investigator with the National Health Research Institutes in Taiwan from 1997 to 2002. He leaves his wife of 61 years, Carol Tsu Ho; daughter, Bettie Pei-wen Carlson of Murrysville; son, John Ho of Wellesley, Massachusetts; sister, Manli Ho of San Francisco, California; twin granddaughters, Caroline and Margaret Carlson; and grandson, Gregory Ho. A Memorial Service will be held at 10 a.m. January 4, 2014 at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Mt. Lebanon. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made to establish a scholarship in memory of Dr. Ho at the University of Pittsburgh. Please indicate on the check: "Memory of Dr. Monto Ho" and mail to: The University of Pittsburgh Department of Infectious Disease and Microbiology, Room A419B Public Health, 130 DeSoto Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15261. Arrangements by STATHERS FUNERAL AND CREMATION SERVICES, INC., 1222 Muldowney Avenue, Lincoln Place, 412-464-4377.
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